Routt County sees 9th COVID-19-related death as positive cases jump over weekend |

Routt County sees 9th COVID-19-related death as positive cases jump over weekend

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — A 72-year-old man from Yampa died Friday due to complications from COVID-19, according to family members.

The man’s death brings Routt County’s total COVID-19-related deaths to nine.

There have been 230 positive cases of COVID-19 reported in the county as of Monday, and nine total deaths, according to the Colorado Department of Health & Environment. The most recent data from the county only shows 212 cases. That data are expected to be updated late Tuesday, per the county’s protocol for releasing data only twice a week rather than daily.

According to family members, the man died while at UCHealth Poudre Valley Hospital in Fort Collins. His is the first death of a county resident related to the virus that has occurred outside of an assisted living facility. The previous eight deaths were of residents at either Casey’s Pond in Steamboat Springs or The Haven in Hayden. The most recent death in the county was reported Aug. 6 at The Haven.

“Our hearts go out to the family of the deceased,” said Roberta Smith, Routt County public health director. “It should remind everyone that COVID-19 kills. … It is not just a risk for vulnerable patients in nursing homes. Even though some may be a low personal risk, what they do to contribute to the spread and overall disease prevalence in our community can increase the risk of infection and even death for all others in the county.”

The newest COVID-19 model indicates the state will hit a record number of hospitalizations from the pandemic within a week, according to the state health department, as hospitalizations from COVID-19 continue to increase rapidly across the state. According to the state, on the current epidemic curve, Colorado will likely exceed the April peak in hospitalizations, and if the epidemic curve is not slowed, the state could surpass intensive care unit capacity in January.

Due to the surge in positive cases across the state, 12 counties in Colorado have moved back to stricter levels of the state’s COVID-19 mitigation plans since Oct. 24, according to the state. Routt County has entered its third week of a four-week mitigation period where state and county health officials are working to chart a way to reduce cases, which would allow the county to stay at Level 1 of the state’s Safer at Home plan.

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